​Mark Clattenburg quit the Premier League due to a lack of support, the ​Daily Star reports

According to former refereeing chief, Keith Hackett, Clattenburg left the Premier League in favour of being 'Head of Referees' in Saudi Arabia because of an incident regarding Juan Mata and John Obi Mikel.

"It's bad news for English refereeing. The Premier League has lost the world's best ref - it's a massive blow. 


"I think it's down to poor management. There were incidents when the PGMOL haven't supported or clarified decisions when they've needed to."

In a match between Chelsea and Man United in 2012, the London club claimed that Clattenburg had used racist language towards Juan Mata and John Obi Mikel, with several players signing witness statements supporting the claim.

After allegedly calling Mata a 'Spanish t***' and Mikel a 'monkey', the FA cleared the referee of any wrongdoing, however Hackett claims that Clattenburg felt that he didn't have enough support over the incident.

"Mark felt after the Mata incident no-one supported him. He was left high and dry."


The referee is held in high regard by most as the best in the Premier League, and Clattenburg took charge of the Euro 2016 and Champions League finals last season.

However, the 41-year-old's final appearance in charge of a Premier League game was Arsenal's victory over struggling Hull, a match mir in controversy.

Clattenburg failed to spot Alexis Sanchez's handball for Arsenal's first goal and decided not to send off Kieran Gibbs despite the defender appearing to commit a foul as the last man.